Residents flee Delta community over suspected herdsmen’s attacks

Following repeated attacks by suspected herdsmen, some residents of Ossissa community in Ndokwa East Local Government Council of Delta State have deserted their homes.

The traditional ruler, HRH Ijibueze Uzu, said the community has sent a petition to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa and President Muhammadu Buhari to come to their rescue.

In the letter, a copy of which was made available to our reporter, HRH Ijibueze Uzu, said the horrendous activities of the herdsmen had continued to prevent indigenes of the town including other inhabitants from their farms in the past two years, thereby creating hunger among them.

The monarch explained that the cattle rearers, among other crimes, had destroyed their farm crops after allegedly attacking the farmers and raping their wives.

Last weekend, thousands of persons mostly women marched through the town, protesting against the activities of the herdsmen in the area. They alleged that two more persons sustained machete cuts and called on security agents to bring the hoodlums to book.

The leader of the women, Mrs. Enechukwu Comfort said: “On October 21, herdsmen numbering about six attacked two of our indigenes; Azuka Okutu and Emeka Nwanne in the bush with sophisticated weapons, including AK 47 riffles and machetes.”

The other demands by the women, which were written on the placards read: “Fulani must go,” “Ossissa, the food basket of the nation, government help us,” “Go back to agriculture, but there is no farmland because of herdsmen,” “Ossissa is a peaceful community, Fulani leave our land,” “Enough is enough, Enough of Fulani harassment of our women” and “Herdsmen are the cause of food scarcity in Nigeria.”

In Gombe State, the police command has deployed special teams to high-risk parts of the state to forestall clashes between farmers and herdsmen.

The state Police Commissioner Mr. Austin Iwar at a security meeting with traditional rulers, council chairmen, farmers association and Miyetti Allah in Gombe yesterday directed all division police officers (DPOs) to constitute teams in order to further strengthen anti-conflict operations of the Nigeria Police.

Meanwhile, members of the National Assembly (NASS) from Ekiti State have declared their support for the state anti-grazing law.

They maintained: “The law must be obeyed by anyone willing to do cattle business in Ekiti State because Nigeria is a federation and each state is empowered by law to make laws to protect its people.”

The NASS members are Senators Biodun Olujimi and Duro Faseyi as well as House of Representatives members, which include Akin Awodumila, Segun Adekola, and others.

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